Category Archives: Recognition

Love is Murder 2012

I know, it’s been a while since I posted. It is always hectic just before I go to an event. February’s event was the Love is Murder 2012 Conference. If you have not been to this event, you really are missing out. It is not your typical writers’ conference or readers convention, it is a lovely mix of the two.

First, let me congratulate (and thank) Mary Connerty. During LIM 2012, we offered an entry to win a FREE Kindle for each Echelon eBook guests purchased. Mary has a new Kindle, thanks to her purchase of the eBook Totally Buzzed by Gale Borger.

Second I would like to congratulate Echelon Press Mystery Author Robert Goldsborough for his well-deserved Lovey Award for Best Historical Novel for his mystery Terror at the Fair.

The LIM board, as they are affectionately known (or sometimes, “Hey, you!”) is comprised of one of the most committed group of volunteers I’ve ever met, and I know each of them rather well. I consider this an honor. At any rate, LIM caters to readers and authors of the mystery genre, with a splash of romance thrown in to keep things lively.

The con offers workshops for writers of any level, as well as panels and events to keep the readers (and everyone else) entertained for the entire weekend. One of my favorite things to do is the editor/author appointments. I have been doing them for many years, and I have found a large number of my Echelon authors, past and present, at those appointment tables. If you are an aspiring mystery writer, or even an already published author shopping a new manuscript, the editors and agents at LIM are among the most gracious. And I’m not even including myself in that statement (though I am kinda cool sometimes.)

Karen L. Syed with award-winning authors David Morrell and Robert Goldsborough at LIM 2012And if you are a reader, I don’t know of any other conference or convention that offers the opportunity for such intimate interaction with the speakers, guests, or professionals. Whether it’s in the lounge, at one of the meals, or at any of the other social events. The special guests go out of their way to make themselves accessible to the fans. For example: In 2004, I heard David Morrell (creator of Rambo, and the author one of my favorite books, Creepers) talk about the value of marketing for authors. I was at a point in my publishing career where I was perched on a very precarious edge and considering quitting. His keynote that night at LIM changed my life and inspired me to change my thinking and forge ahead. We are celebrating our 11th anniversary for Echelon Press this month. On Saturday night at LIM 2012, David Morrell spoke again and this time he indicated that he was making a correction to his previous keynote. I couldn’t wait to get out of that banquet room so I could pull him aside and let him know that I didn’t consider his keynote a correction, but a wealth of additional input that will hopefully serve both authors and readers. To paraphrase, he reminded authors that the book business isn’t just about marketing, and that they should look deep inside themselves and write the stories they are meant to write. Forget about chasing the “market” when writing, just write from within yourself. It is some of the best advice I’ve heard in a long time. Because when you write the right book the way it is supposed to be written, it will ultimately be the greatest gift you can give readers. I have said this before, but it bears repeating, David Morrell is not only a brilliant writer, but also a brilliantly inspiring person.

Chicagoland "Those Were the Days Radio Players"Aside from the keynote, there were a number of other awesome events, including one of my favorites, The Chicagoland “Those Were the Days Radio Players,” who perform actual radio shows as they were performed in their glory days. It is an amazing thing to watch and I hope they continue to do the shows each year.

Well, I’ve gone on a bit. I’ll pop out for now, but stop back by later in the week to read my next LIM 2012 post, “Burning Bridges: or 5 things you should have known before attending LIM 2012.”

Until then…


Have You Read Origins by Sean Hayden?

You can help pick a real winner!

The Paranormal Romance Guild is happy to announce your Book has been chosen as one of the Best Reads in 2011 by our reviewers and we are having a contest for readers to choose the winner…Voting will be on our site All nominees can be seen if you click here.

Voting will begin at 9 am on the 6th of January EST. We hope fans of Origins will visit the site and cast their vote for it.


Origins by Sean Hayden

Buy Now!


The Test of Time (Bookstore spotlight by Nancy Lynn Jarvis)

I live in Santa Cruz, a small county with arguably the greatest per-capita number of independent bookstores in California. We take our indies seriously here, so seriously we have no chain bookstores in the county.

The brightest jewel of all our indies is Bookshop Santa Cruz. Bookshop, as it is affectionately known by locals, opened in 1966. It stayed open after the Loma Prieta Earthquake in 1989 destroyed its brick and mortar building by operating out of a gigantic tent while rebuilding. Bookshop thrived even after Borders opened a death-star of a store a block away. In the economic downturn, Bookshop Santa Cruz innovated; Borders closed last year. There are over twenty full time employees working for Bookshop and the store hosts over a dozen active book clubs. “Let’s meet at Bookshop,” is an often heard refrain throughout Santa Cruz County.

Big names like Jonathan Franzen, Amy and David Sedaris, and Jane Fonda have had book signings sponsored by Bookshop Santa Cruz. If the name is really big, Bookshop rents the civic auditorium for them–crowds over a thousand strong don’t fit into Bookshop Santa Cruz.

I’ve always been a fan of Bookshop Santa Cruz so you can imagine how excited I am that I’ll be introducing my latest book, The Widow’s Walk League on July 26th at their Local Authors Night. Giving local writers a chance to interact with their community in another of the things Bookshop Santa Cruz is known for doing right.



Twitter: @BookshopSC

Nancy Lynn Jarvis has been a Santa Cruz, California, Realtor® for more than twenty years. She owns a real estate company with her husband, Craig. 

After earning a BA in behavioral science from San Jose State University, she worked in the advertising department of the San Jose Mercury News. A move to Santa Cruz meant a new job as a librarian and later a stint as the business manager of Shakespeare/Santa Cruz. 

Nancy’s work history reflects her philosophy: people should try something radically different every few years. Writing is her newest adventure. 

She invites you to take a peek into the real estate world through the stories that form the backdrop of her Regan McHenry mysteries. Details and ideas come from Nancy’s own experiences.